SciFi Mama

Adventures in raising a geeky child

Assorted Updates March 3, 2011

Filed under: books,Mac,Mommy,Paige — scifimama @ 5:17 am

Most importantly, my Paper Bag Princess has a costume.  Yes, I have managed to cut holes into a paper bag.  Thank you for the applause, I have managed to master using scissors.  Some of you may wonder where I got a paper bag in today’s shopping world.  Granny’s store still uses them, and so does the commissary on base.  I raided Mom’s stash and grabbed a couple of paper bags.

I finally found our stuffed dragon.  He was in Paige’s room, located in the Pirate Princess Fort, guarding her doll house.  Yes, my little girl has a pretty good imagination.  The wagon is not completely ready for the parade yet, but it’s getting closer.  I have the dragon and a cardboard box.  Now to make the box look like a cave and finish decorating the wagon in beads to make it all festive.

My beautiful iPhone 4 has been returned to me!  Fed Ex was supposed to delivery it by 10:30 last Thursday morning.  It finally got here around 2 PM Friday afternoon.  I got it restored back to my apps and settings, and my new phone is up and running.  I’m enjoying being able to surf faster than ever.  In other Apple related news, iPad 2 has been announced.  It’s thinner, it’s pretty, and it’s coming out soon.  Not that I’ll be getting an iPad 2.  But, I’m hoping this means Apple will drop the price of the original iPad by half, like they do with the older iPhones when the new model comes out.  If they drop the price in half, it may come down into my price range.  And just in time for my birthday next month too.

Another thing I was waiting for was Patrick Rothfuss’ new book, The Wise Man’s Fear.  Beth over at C. Beth Blog turned me onto the author.  Book 1 was very good, and I was impatiently waiting for book 2, along with lots of other people.  The book was released Tuesday morning.  The book store opened at 10; I took lunch at 11 to go get my book.  I walked in and had to ask for a copy, since I couldn’t find it on the shelf.  There was a very good reason I couldn’t find it on the shelves, they hadn’t had time to place it on the table.  Every time they tried to make a spot for it and put it out, someone else came looking for it.  The bookstore started with 15 copies at 10 AM, and had 3 when I walked out the door.  As much as I would love to stick my nose in the book and not come up (like I do with Harry Potter), I have to go to work, and make a parade float.

And finally, our daycare dilema has been solved.  And it was solved the easiest way I know: we’re not moving.  Yes, it was that simple.  Either way one of us will have to make that commute.  And since we couldn’t find something in a decent area that we could afford, we decided to stay where we are.  We have an amazing daycare for before and after school care.  We’re in a very good school district where we are.  So, why not stay where we are?  It made sense to us.  Housing prices skyrocketed after Hurricane Katrina.  The further we get from it, prices are slowly coming down.  Hopefully prices will come down more and we’ll be able to find something we like and can afford.  Even better would be if the insurance reform is pursued in Mississippi like the rumors I’ve heard have said.  See, we can afford the mortgage on a house south of I-10, but we can’t afford the homeowners insurance.  At the end of next school year we’ll try again.

I think that’s everything around here that’s been going on.  Not all that exciting.  Except maybe the iPad 2 announcement.  It really is a very pretty piece of equipment.

 

It’s happened again November 19, 2010

Filed under: books,Daddy,Mommy — scifimama @ 5:36 am

I’ve gotten sucked into another book and I’ve stopped doing other things as much, like blogging.  It’s all Ronnie’s fault too, but that’s not the point.  Stephen King has always been one of my favorite authors.  Until a few years ago he held the top spot and couldn’t be touched by anyone else.  Then I discovered others I loved just about as much.  JK Rowling got up there by Harry Potter book 3; that’s when I started going to the midnight book releases in Miami.  Then I discovered Orson Scott Card.  Scott Lynch (Gentleman Bastard series), Patrick Rothfuss (The Name of the Wind), and Steig Larsson (Lisbeth Sanders/ Millenium series)  have been more recent additions to some of my favorite authors.

Stephen King and I had a parting of the ways after I tried to read Lisey’s Story.  It wasn’t one of his better works, but I tried to keep reading it.  I got about halfway through it and I just had to put it down.  I couldn’t go any further with it.  It takes a lot for me to put down a book like that, but I did.  Ronnie has been listening to audio books on his daily commute and had downloaded Under the Dome.  Stephen King released that book last November.  I saw it in the stores, but didn’t bother picking it up.  Ronnie go so sucked into the book that he couldn’t stop listening.  I would catch him listening to his iPod as he cooked dinner.  Playing video games or surfing the web?  Listening to his iPod.  He couldn’t stop listening.  When Books a Million had a sale last week I picked it up.  And I can’t put it down.

The book gets back to the great writing Stephen King did with stories like The Stand or The Gunslinger.  Once again I’m carrying the book with me wherever I go.  Between the time when Paige goes to bed and I go to bed pretty much all I do is read.  This is not a typical horror novel you would expect.  The basic premis is that one Saturday morning a dome appears exactly over a towns boundaries.  The book then follows what happens in the small town in Maine.  I’ve spent about as much time away from the book as I think I can for now.  I have to wrap this up and get back to the book.  Yes, I know that means I may be addicted.  That’s OK, I’m about halfway through the book so I should be back soon.

 

Charlotte’s Web November 5, 2010

Filed under: books,Paige — scifimama @ 5:41 am

We’ve been reading this book for about a week now.  Paige gets one chapter a night before bed.  So far she’s loving the book.  Tonight we got to the part where Charlotte says Wilber is Terrific.  Paige can’t wait to see what happens each night, and I’m glad.  I’m glad that she loves books as much as we do.  With a name like Paige I think it’s kind of expected she likes to read.  Also, this was one of my favorite books as a kid.  I read and reread this book over and over.  Stuart Little was another favorite.  I’ve already told her a bit about it and she’s excited to read that one next.  After we finish reading Charlotte’s Web, we’ll watch the movie.  I’m saving Stuart Little for after we read the book as well.

We were reading the Jack and Annie Magic Treehouse books, but Paige has grown tired of them.  She’s decided she’s had enough, at least for now.  We got to book 18 before she lost interest.  They are a great series, and I highly recommend them to anyone who is looking for things to read with their kids.  I’m thinking of starting Beverly Cleary’s Ramona books once we’ve finished all three of EB White’s.

 

Book suggestions needed August 20, 2010

Filed under: books — scifimama @ 8:03 am

I’m one of those readers when I really like an author I get completely sucked into them.  For the past several months I’ve been sucked into the Harry Bosch series of books written by Michael Connelly.  Now that I’ve finished the entire Bosch series I’m looking for something new to read.  Before the Harry Bosch series I got sucked into Twilight.  I know, I know, so many people like to make fun of them.  I do too, but the books were a good, fun read.  C Beth got me hooked on Patrick Rothfuss and his series Kingkiller Chronicles.  I have to wait until October for the next Bosch book, and March of next year for the next Kingkiller book.  What am I to read in the mean time?

I’ve read more Curious George than I can ever tell you.  I can recite The Paperbag Princess from memory.  I can pick up Ender’s Game, flip to any page and immediately know exactly what is happening.  I’ve been thinking of rereading Greg Bear’s Eon series.  Or maybe Harry Potter to get ready for the next movie to come out.  There’s always more Richard Patterson out there as well.  But honestly, I’m wanting something new to read.  You can look over to the right to see what books and authors I’ve been reading.  Once it gets a bit cooler it will be time for my annual reading of To Kill a Mockingbird.  There’s just something about the Fall air in Alabama that makes me need to read that book.

I guess until I find something new I’ll go back to the books I’ve been wanting to reread.  I think I may need to go to the library alone this weekend so I can really browse the books.  Maybe I’ll do that before my scrapbooking get together on Saturday.

 

Self Rescuing Princess May 16, 2010

Filed under: books,Geeky,Paige — scifimama @ 7:04 am

Like most 4 year old girls Paige likes playing Princess.  She likes the Disney Princesses, has lots of princess dress up clothes, and says she wants to be a princess when she grows up.  That’s great.  I know she’ll go through many likes and dislikes as she grows up.  Ronnie and I may not like the whole princess thing, but we are most definitely letting her be her own person and express herself.  All of that is great.  We want her to have fun and at this stage, that includes princesses.

Of course, Mommy is a rather independent person.  That’s how I was raised.  I want Paige to be independent as well.  Most of the princess stories don’t really have self sufficient heroines; they’re waiting around for a prince to come save them.  We have plenty of those stories around here.  I was wanting more books that showed the princess as the heroine, not the damsal in distress.  As I was browsing one of my favorite websites, Think Geek, I found this shirt.  Ah yes, they have it in both Mommy & Paige sizes.  I love the write up on this shirt.  Think Geek does a great job on all of their descriptions.

As I read, I knew all of the women or movies they mentioned: Star Wars, Buffy, Wonder Woman.  But who was this Elizabeth?  I hadn’t read the book they mentioned The Paper Bag Princess.  I did a quick search and found the basis for this story.  I knew we had to have it.  This princess takes charge, kicks a dragons butt, and tells the prince off in the end.  Paige may not understand the whole meaning behind the story yet, but she does understand most of it.  The first time we read it she was sad they didn’t get married in the end.  Then I pointed out that the prince wasn’t very nice to her, and she agreed Elizabeth needs to marry someone nice.  We’ve now read the book 4 times in the very first day.  She keeps asking me to read it to her again and again.

 

Magic Tree House April 27, 2010

Filed under: books,Paige — scifimama @ 7:18 am

I should probably start this by saying we are a family of readers.  Think about it, we named our daughter Paige.  And that’s not just because of Paige on Charmed or because Ronnie insisted we have a P name for her middle name.  (Her monogram is STP, you know, like the band.)  Thanks to this blog by Jonah Lisa we have discovered The Magic Tree House books.  Her son, Huck, is the same age as Paige and I decided if he can sit through several chapters a night, we would try it too.

At first I tried to get these from the library, but then realized that was too slow.  They didn’t have them in order, or would have to get them from another branch.  We’re going through them at a rate of 1 book every 3 days and the library just couldn’t keep up with her.  I’ve taken to buying them in sets of 4 from Barnes and Noble.  I love their pick up service.  Find the book I want online, reserve it in the store, get a text telling me it’s ready, stop by and pick it up.  No having to search for it, or have a wasted trip.  
To say Paige has become hooked is an understatement.  She absolutely loves this series.  I’m sure she doesn’t understand quite all of it yet, but she will.  One of the good things about owning the series is she can go back and re read them for herself when she gets older.  The series is based on a brother and sister, Jack and Annie, and their adventures in a magical tree house Annie finds in the woods.  We usually read 3 chapters a night for 2 nights, then finish the last 4 chapters on the 3rd night.  Sometimes on weekends we cheat and read some during the day plus our usual chapters at night.  You know it must be good when your 4 year old brings you the book and asks you to keep reading.  
We started book 9 last night, Dolphins at Daybreak.  Paige has already pulled out book 10, Ghost Town at Sundown, and asked how many more nights until she can read that one.
 

Ender March 4, 2009

Filed under: books — scifimama @ 10:39 pm

Ender is the main character in a series of books by Orson Scott Card. (click here) If your not a reader, you can probably stop reading here. If you do like to read, and enjoy science fiction, keep going.

Ender is a 6 year old boy when he’s chosen to save the world. Not asking much, are we? I won’t tell you if he does it. That would spoil the whole book. Or maybe not. Anyway, I can’t give away an ending.

Card does an amazing job of creating this world. The world is very similar to ours since it’s Earth. But he writes it in the future, or maybe the past, he never says. The world he created goes far beyond our galaxy into other worlds as well.

There are 2 distinct sections of the series. There’s Ender’s World & the Shadow Series. When you pick these books up for the first time, do not read them as they were written. First, read Ender’s Game. Then, read Ender’s Shadow. How you read from there is up to you. Ender’s Shadow completes Ender’s Game. You don’t even realize what was missing until you read it. Then so much more falls into place. The Shadow series follows Bean and returns to Earth. The Ender series goes into other galaxies.

I’ve treated myself to the latest in the series: Ender in Exile. I’ve been longing to read it and being forced to not do much around the house, I’ve definitely got the time. I’ve been sucked back into the world Card has created. It’s like coming home to old friends. You haven’t seen them in a while, but it’s friends you really, really liked. Once you’re with them again it’s as if you never were apart.

If science fiction isn’t your thing, try Empire. It’s set in modern society & represents what could happen to us. Happy Reading!

 

 
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